At Somerset Hills Eye Care Center, our Bedminster ophthalmologist often sees an eye problem called pterygium, or “surfer’s eye,” especially during the summer months. It is common in warmer months because it usually occurs in people who spend a lot of their time outdoors. Pterygium reveals itself on the white part of the eye as a growth of tissue that is usually pink in color. Pterygium usually forms on the white part of the eye that is closer to your nose. The lesion that forms in non-cancerous, and it usually develops very slowly throughout the patient’s life, and can stop growing after a certain point, depending on the individual. Sometimes, the only symptom of pterygium is the lesion itself, but in other cases there are distinct symptoms that can be uncomfortable or irritating. These symptoms may include: a burning of the eye, a gritty feeling in the eye, an itchiness to the eye, feeling like there is something stuck in your eye, or blurry vision.
Pterygium can occur either in one eye or both. In some cases, the growth continues to develop to the point where it goes onto the cornea, changing its shape and causing astigmatism, which in turn can lead to blurred vision. Our Bedminster ophthalmologist can let you know if your particular case has progressed to this point and can offer the best treatment possible for your individual situation. In more advanced cases where the cornea is affected, the growth may need to be surgically removed. For milder cases, the use of special eye drops of varying strengths is usually effective enough to relieve the symptoms. It is believed that pterygium is caused by prolonged exposure to UV light, and from irritants like dust or wind, so keeping your eyes protected outdoors is a good way to prevent it from occurring.
If you would like to learn more about your eye health and the related services provided by our Bedminster ophthalmologist at Somerset Hills Eye Care Center, we invite you to visit our website where you can find additional information about these topics and more. If you have any questions or concerns that you feel we can help you with, do not hesitate to contact us either by phone or online.